Just IN: American Truckers REVOLT Against California

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Minority truckers are facing challenges in maintaining their businesses due to the strict green regulations imposed by the state of California, as reported by individuals impacted who spoke with the Daily Caller News Foundation.

The California Air Resources Board (CARB), the environmental regulatory agency of California, is set to prohibit the sale of new diesel heavy-duty trucks beginning in 2036, with a goal of enhancing health outcomes for minority communities. This mandate is just one of many similar regulations introduced in recent years, all of which have significantly hindered the ability of minorities to run their own trucking companies and pursue the American dream, according to some of these small business owners who spoke with the DCNF.

“Many California neighborhoods, especially Black and Brown, low-income and vulnerable communities, live, work, play and attend schools adjacent to the ports, railyards, distribution centers and freight corridors and experience the heaviest truck traffic,” CARB said in 2020 after proposing its most recent “clean truck” rule. The agency stated that the implementation of that specific regulation for trucks was partly driven by the need to tackle the “disproportionate risks and health and pollution burdens affecting these communities.”

Bureaucrats are presenting the rules as a means to alleviate respiratory and health issues in minority communities residing near heavily-trafficked trucking routes. However, some minority truckers have expressed to the DCNF that these rules are causing financial strain, ultimately negating any supposed health advantages.

“A lot of our members are minority-owned small businesses,” Joe Rajkovacz, the director of governmental affairs and communications for the Western States Trucking Association, told the DCNF. “Here in California, there is a decided indifference to small business trucking by both politicians and bureaucrats.”

Randy Thomas, an African American individual, was raised in South Central Los Angeles. He was the son of a World War II veteran and had lived in California his entire life. Over the course of many decades, he successfully managed his trucking firm, gradually expanding it from a one-man operation to a company that employed 15 drivers. This growth allowed him to generate sufficient income to send all of his children to college, marking a significant milestone as they became the first in their family to have this opportunity.

However, in 2009, due to the changing regulatory landscape, Randy Thomas found himself compelled to close down his business. The financial implications of purchasing new and costly trucks to comply with the new mandates made it impractical for him to continue operating.

“I did my first trip when I was 20. Everything was going great from 1971 up until around the time that (former President Barack) Obama got into office,” Thomas told the DCNF. “By 2008, we come up with this clean truck program here. We were having all these meetings. I’m looking at the division between the environmentalists, telling us about CO2 and gases … I’m looking at the charts of what our engines that we had at that time, which were made mainly mechanical diesel, and they had no idea what engine was gonna be the engine they were writing into prospective goals. Guys are going out of business like you wouldn’t believe.”

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